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APRIL
[ Also see Months ]

She who from April dates her years,
  Diamonds should wear, lest bitter tears
    For vain repentance flow; this stone,
      Emblem of innocence is known.
      - Unattributed Author, April,
        in "Notes and Queries", May 11, 1889, p. 371

The first of April, some do say
  Is set apart for All Fools' day;
    But why the people call it so,
      Nor I, nor they themselves, do know.
      - Unattributed Author,
        Poor Robin's Almanac--All Fools' Day

There is no glory in star or blossom
  Till looked upon by a loving eye;
    There is no fragrance in April breezes
      Till breathed with joy as they wander by.
      - William Cullen Bryant

When April winds
  Grew soft, the maple burst into a flush
    Of scarlet flowers. The tulip tree, high up,
      Opened in airs of June her multiple
        OF golden chalices to humming birds
          And silken-wing'd insects of the sky.
      - William Cullen Bryant, The Fountain

Old April wanes, and her last dewy morn
  Her death-bed steeps in tears; to hail the May
    New blooming blossoms 'neath the sun are born,
      And all poor April's charms are swept away.
      - John Clare,
        The Village Minstrel and Other Poems--The Last of April

Every tear is answered by a blossom,
  Every sigh with songs and laughter blent,
    April-blooms upon the breezes toss them.
      April knows her own, and is content.
      - Susan Coolidge (pseudonym of Sarah Chauncey Woolsey),
        April

Now the noisy winds are still;
  April's coming up the hill!
    All the spring is in her train,
      Led by shining ranks of rain;
        Pit, pat, patter, clatter,
          Sudden sun and clatter patter!
            . . . .
              All things ready with a will,
                April's coming up the hill!
      - Mary Mapes Dodge,
        Now the Noisy Winds Are Still

April is the cruelest month, breeding
  Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
    Memory and desire, stirring
      Dull roots with spring rain.
      - T.S. Eliot (Thomas Stearns Eliot),
        The Waste Land (pt. I)

The April winds are magical,
  And thrill our tuneful frames;
    The garden-walks are passional
      To bachelors and dames.
      - Ralph Waldo Emerson, April

Oh, the lovely fickleness of an April day!
      - William Hamilton Gibson,
        Pastoral Days--Spring

Make me over, Mother April,
  When the sap begins to stir!
    When thy flowery hand delivers
      All the mountain-prisoned rivers,
        And thy great heart beats and quivers,
          To revive the days that were.
      - Richard Hovey, April

For April sobs while these are so glad
  April weeps while these are so gay,--
    Weeps like a tired child who had,
      Playing with flowers, lost its way.
      - Helen Hunt Jackson (Helen Hunt),
        Verses--April

The children with the streamlets sing,
  When April stops at last her weeping;
    And every happy growing thing
      Laughs like a babe just roused from sleeping.
      - Lucy Larcom, The Sister Months

I love the season well
  When forest glades are teeming with bright forms,
    Nor dark and many-folded clouds foretell
      The coming of storms.
      - Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, An April Day
         (st. 8)

Sweet April! many a thought
  Is wedded unto thee, as hearts are wed;
    Nor shall they fail, till, to its autumn brought,
      Life's golden fruit is shed.
      - Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, An April Day
         (st. 8)

Sweet April-time--O cruel April-time!
  Year after year returning, with a brow
    Of promise, and red lips with longing paled,
      And backward-hidden hands that clutch the joys
        Of vanished springs, like flowers.
      - Dinah Maria Mulock (used pseudonym Mrs. Craik),
        April

The lyric sound of laughter
  Fills all the April hills
    The joy-song of the crocus,
      The mirth of daffodils.
      - Clinton Scollard, April Music

Such comfort as do lusty young men feel
  When well-apparelled April on the heel
    Of limping Winter treads, even such delight
      Among fresh fennel buds shall you this night
        Inherit at my house.
      - William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet
         (Capulet at I, ii)

From you have I been absent in the spring,
  When proud-pied April, dressed in all his trim,
    Hath put a spirit of youth in everything,
      That heavy Saturn laughed and leapt with him;
        Yet nor the lays of birds, not the sweet smell
          Of different flowers in odor and in hue,
            Could make me any summer's story tell,
              Or from their proud lap pluck them where they grew:
                Nor did I wonder at the lily's white,
                  Nor praise the deep vermilion in the rose;
                    They were but sweet, but figures of delight,
                      Drawn after you, you pattern of all those.
                        Yet seemed it winter still, and you away,
                          As with your shadow I with these did play.
      - William Shakespeare, Sonnet XCVIII

Ceres, most bounteous lady, thy rich leas
  Of wheat, rye, barley, fetches, oats, and pease;
    Thy turfy mountains, where live nibbling sheep,
      And flat meads thatched with stover, them to keep;
        Thy banks with pioned and twilled brims,
          Which spongy April at thy hest betrims
            To make cold nymphs chaste crowns; and thy broom groves,
              Whose shadow the dismissed bachelor loves,
                Being lasslorn; thy pole-clipt vineyard;
                  And thy sea-marge, sterile and rocky-hard,
                    Where thou thyself dost air--the queen o' th' sky,
                      Whose wat-ry arch and messenger am I,
                        Bids thee leave these, and with her sovereign grace,
                          Here on this grass-plot, in this very place,
                            To come and sport: her peacocks fly amain.
                              Approach, rich Ceres, her to entertain.
      - William Shakespeare, The Tempest
         (Iris at IV, i)

Sweet April's tears,
  Dead on the hem of May.
      - Alexander Smith, A Life Drama
         (sc. 8, l. 65)

A gush of bird-song, a patter of dew,
  A cloud, and a rainbow's warning,
    Suddenly sunshine and perfect blue--
      An April day in the morning.
      - Harriet Prescott Spofford, April

Sweet April showers
  Do bring May flowers.
      - Thomas Tusser,
        Five Hundred Points of Good Husbandry
         (ch. XXXIX)

April, April,
  Laugh thy girlish laughter,
    Then, the moment after,
      Weep thy girlish tears!
      - Sir William Watson (2), April

Again the blackbirds sings; the streams
  Wake, laughing, from their winter dreams,
    And tremble in the April showers
      The tassels of the maple flowers.
      - John Greenleaf Whittier, The Singer
         (st. 20)


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